Dog-Friendly Holidays In Cornwall
The Ulti-Mutt Guide
We may be biased but we really do think Cornwall is the perfect destination for a dog-friendly holiday!
With over 300 dog-friendly beaches in Cornwall to choose from, there’s plenty of opportunity for them to chase the waves and feel the sand between their paws. Plus there are miles and miles of stunning coast path to explore, as well as walks through ancient woodland, across open moor and around stunning estates of stately homes.
The vast majority of tourist attractions are dog-friendly too and the same goes for the multitude of cosy pubs, restaurants and cafes that North Cornwall is famous for. You’ll find three excellent dog-friendly pubs within 2 miles of your cottage, from gorgeous gastro-pubs to friendly Cornish locals. The closest is a 25 minute stroll along the lanes – and the landlord is known to be generous with the dog treats!
Thanks to Cornwall’s outdoors lifestyle, many local business owners are dog owners too. As a consequence, when you’re wandering around the local harbours and fishing villages, you’ll find water bowls lining your route. And many of the gift shops and galleries will allow you to take your well-behaved dog in with you, so you can have a mooch with your pooch!
So, leads at the ready, here’s your Ulti-Mutt Guide to Dog-Friendly Holidays in Cornwall…
Year-Round Dog-Friendly Beaches Within A 30 Minute Drive
Trebarwith Strand Our closest beach and it’s a cracker. Stunningly beautiful with golden sand, rock pools, caves and a stream, this is doggy heaven. There’s a very dog-friendly pub, the Port William, with fabulous views over the beach and a cafe with outside seating. Lovely walks too along the coast path in both directions.
Port Gaverne and Port Isaac Two pretty little neighbouring beaches that are mostly sandy, partly shingly. Port Gaverne has a brilliant dog-friendly pub and cafe backing the beach, whilst Port Isaac has plenty of cafes and a dog-friendly pub, the Golden Lion, to choose from.
Daymer Bay Tucked inside the mouth of the Camel Estuary, this is a gorgeous sheltered sandy beach loved by young families and dog owners. At low-tide it joins with Rock beach, but when the tide’s in you can still walk over the headland. Small cafe in the car park behind the beach.
Rock Another lovely sandy beach, this one opposite Padstow, where you can while away the hours watching the comings and goings of all the watersports enthusiasts. Plenty of dog-friendly cafes to choose from and a gastro-pub, the Mariners, run by celebrity chef Paul Ainsworth, where dogs are welcome in the bar and on the terrace.
Bossiney A remote cove between Tintagel and Boscastle, recently voted the best beach in the UK. The car park is located by the roadside and from there it’s a walk across fields and down some steep access steps but it’s worth it! It’s a short walk from here to the beautiful Rocky Valley or head inland to the stunning waterfalls at St Nectan’s Glen. No facilities by the beach but there are loos in the car park. Update 2023: beach currently closed due to rockfall.
7 Bays for 7 Days, Padstow Or 6 bays for 6 days to be precise as Trevone has dog restrictions during the main holiday season. All the others, Harlyn, Constantine, Treyarnon, Booby’s Bay, Mother Ivey’s Bay and Porthcothan, are dog-friendly year round, sandy and beautiful!
Black Rock The southern half of Widemouth Bay is known as Black Rock. It’s a mostly sandy beach and dogs are welcome here year round. Dog-friendly cafe.The other half of Widemouth restricts dogs between the hours of 10am and 6pm between 15th May and 30th September.
Beaches with restrictions between 15th May and 30th September, again within a 30 minute drive:
Polzeath A very popular sandy beach, teaming with surfers and children during the holidays. Dogs aren’t allowed on the beach between the hours of 10am and 6pm during the summer but that still leaves plenty of time for early morning and evening walks – and the sunsets at Polzeath are often spectacular so well worth it. There are plenty of dog-friendly options for breakfast or an evening meal overlooking the beach.
Crackington Haven A gorgeous cove between Boscastle and Bude with a dog-friendly pub, the Coombe Barton Inn, and a cafe just behind the beach. No dogs between 10am and 6pm.
Trevone Another sandy cove near Padstow, with a great cafe and surf shop, but no dogs allowed between 10am and 6pm during the main season.
Crooklets and Summerleaze Beaches, Bude Beautiful sandy beaches that are dog-friendly between October and mid-May and an easy walk from the town centre and the canal with its many cafes and restaurants.
Dog-Friendly Pubs, Cafes and Restaurants
We’ll start with those closest to your holiday cottage:
The White Hart, St Teath A super-friendly proper Cornish pub, just 1.5 miles and a 25 minute stroll along the lanes from your cottage. Dogs are very welcome in both the bar and restaurant area and there’s a pub garden too for when the weather’s nice. Serving good old-fashioned pub grub: fish and chips, pie and chips, ham, egg and chips, lots of other things with chips, curries etc and very generous with the dog biscuits too!
The Old Inn & Restaurant, St Breward This 11th Century pub on the edge of Bodmin Moor is the highest in Cornwall and it’s a pretty walk to here along the lanes from your cottage – though it’s a bit further, taking just under an hour. Dogs are welcome in the bar area. They’re famed for their Sunday carveries and mixed grills – the meat is all locally grown and is provided by Buttons, the butchers on the farm opposite Tredarrup (highly recommend a visit for your breakfast bacon and steaks for the bbq!).
The St Tudy Inn Just 2 miles away, in the neighbouring village of St Tudy, you’ll find this well-renowned gastro-pub serving excellent food, showcasing local and seasonal produce. Dogs are very welcome in the bar area.
The St Kew Inn A beautiful old 15th Century inn located in the pretty village of St Kew, between Tredarrup Farm and Wadebridge. There’s a lovely beer garden bordering the old parish church for the summer months but dogs are very welcome throughout the pub, so you can cosy up indoors by the fire during the colder months. Excellent food and drink!
St Kew Farmshop and Cafe Just off the Atlantic Highway is this excellent dog-friendly farmshop and cafe, which is the perfect place to stop off for breakfast or lunch – Gordon Ramsay loves the food here.
The Port William, Trebarwith Strand Tucked into the cliffs there are stunning views from the pub over the beach and along the coast to Tintagel Castle.
Port Gaverne Restaurant Just a short drive away is this well regarded restaurant tucked just behind the beach serving seasonal Cornish coastal food, with fish fresh off the boat just yards away. Dogs are very welcome in the bar area.
Jamaica Inn This quirky old inn on the moor, made famous by Daphne du Maurier, is believed to be haunted and is worth a visit for the history alone – there’s even a smugglers museum to have a nose round before you eat. There are some great walks on the moor from the pub too, up to Brown Willy and to Dozmary Pool where, legend has it, King Arthur’s sword Excalibur was flung and caught by the Lady of the Lake. Dogs are welcome in the bar area and the museum.
St. Petroc’s Bistro, Padstow Rick Stein’s informal bistro in the heart of Padstow welcome dogs in both the secret garden and the bar area, where there’s also a cosy log fire. Excellent steaks and seafood and there’s a very reasonably priced set lunch menu too.
The Cornish Arms, St Merryn Another of Rick Stein’s, this lovely gastro-pub is just a couple of miles outside Padstow and welcomes dogs throughout. Classic pub menu done really well with some lovely specials too – not surprisingly there are also some excellent fish options.
The Mariners, Rock Fabulous pub overlooking the water at Rock, opposite Padstow on the Camel Estuary. Dogs are welcome on the terrace and in the bar. Not surprisingly, given that it’s run by Paul Ainsworth, the food is fantastic. Great option for Sunday lunch.
St. Endodoc Hotel & Restaurant Wonderful views across the Camel Estuary from the dog-friendly brasserie offering set menus, barbecues and Sunday lunches. And as an added bonus they’re happy for you to leave the car at the hotel after lunch and enjoy a walk around Rock.
The Pickwick Inn, St.Issey Just this side of Padstow, the Pickwick Inn has lovely views across the water and dogs are welcome in the bar area. Serving wonderful fish, steaks and burgers amongst other things.
Dog-Friendly Days Out in Cornwall
Enjoy The Very Best of Cornwall With Your Dog By Your Side:
The Camel Trail 18 miles long and almost entirely traffic-free, the pretty Camel Trail follows the river from nearby Wenfordbridge all the way out to sea at Padstow. Perfect for walks and runs with your pooch, but did you know you can also hire bikes with doggy-trailers, so you can cycle all or part of the route too.
Tintagel Castle Dogs are very welcome all over the castle and it’s a lovely place to walk. The views are jaw-dropping. There’s a cafe at the bottom with outside seating. Dogs are allowed on the beach and in Merlin’s cave too.
South West Coast Path Hundreds of miles of perfectly stunning scenery awaits you and your four-legged friend. The whole stretch is breathtakingly beautiful so just pick a parking spot, turn left or right and you really can’t go wrong. Picture-postcard fishing villages and hidden coves appear around every headland. It’s a dog walker’s delight.
Bodmin & Wenford Steam Railway Take a trip back in time as you steam through the Cornish countryside.
Eden Project Although dogs aren’t allowed in the biomes, there are miles of outdoor garden paths to explore and sniff, whilst you take it in turns to explore indoors. Water bowls are provided along with an undercover dining area.
Hangloose Located next to the Eden Project, the site offers white knuckle activities for adrenalin junkies of all ages. There’s plenty of outdoor space to chill out with your dog whilst you take it in turns to zip-wire, climb trees and jump off high things. Shaded parking available.
St. Nectan’s Glen A magical walk through an Atlantic rainforest, which can get muddy, to be rewarded by the sight of beautiful waterfalls. Keep your eyes peeled for Cornish piskies! There are also some lovely walks from here to the stunning Rocky Valley on the coast near Boscastle. Cafe on site. Dogs on leads welcome.
Bodmin Moor A walk on the moor makes a change from the coast and there are plenty to choose from. Conquer the twin granite peaks of Roughtor and Brown Willy. Or explore ancient standing stones and Logan rocks. These are enormous boulders balanced on top of each other that rock, either alarmingly or gently depending on your mindset, when you stand on them. There are some fabulous dog-friendly pubs for lunch in any of the pretty stone moorland villages. Check the weather before you set off for a trek across the moors and remember to keep your dog on a lead around livestock.
Lanhydrock Estate This beautiful wooded estate is run by the National Trust. It’s a marvellous place for a dog walk at any time of year, although it’s particularly good in the spring and autumn. There are over 900 acres to explore, with dog waste bins aplenty. Although dogs aren’t permitted in the house and formal gardens, they are very welcome in the two cafes on site, so you can reward yourselves with a restorative pasty or a legendary National Trust cream tea after your walk.
Lost Gardens of Heligan Explore the magical gardens and farmland around Heligan, where there are miles and miles of paths and routes to follow. Dogs are very welcome, although they must be kept on a lead due to livestock. You’ll be given a free map on arrival, which shows where the dog poo bins are amongst other things. The only place dogs can’t access is the rope bridge and that’s purely because it has no floor for them to walk on!
Haywood Cider Farm Join Farmer Tom on a walking tour of the orchards in the nearby village of St. Mabyn, where you’ll learn about the history of cider making and the farm. There’s lashings of cider and apple juice to sample – the same apple juice you’ll find in the welcome basket in your holiday cottage. Dogs are very welcome to join.
Pencarrow Gardens Over 50 acres of gorgeous gardens and estate near Bodmin where you can roam freely with your dog. Shaded parking available. And there’s a cafe with plenty of outdoor seating, as well as a pretty picnic area.
Shipwreck Museum Salty sea dogs are very welcome at this fascinating museum by the harbour at Charlestown. There are plenty of dog-friendly options for a bite to eat around the pretty harbour, which is just 30 minutes away on the south coast.
Sealife Safari Take your best friend along on a boat trip from Padstow to search for dolphins, whales, puffins and more. Small to medium sized dogs are welcome. However it is a bumpy ride, so this is one for fearless fidos only.
Jubilee Queen If you or your hound would prefer something a little more sedate how about a cruise along the coast instead? Leaving from Padstow, boat trips last around 1.5 hours. There’s an undercover area, if the weather is a little damp, and a bar so you and your dog can enjoy a pint of the famous Doom Bar ale as you cross the infamous Doom Bar sandbank at the mouth of the Camel Estuary.
Wheal Martyn Discover the fascinating world of china clay and learn of all the everyday things it hides in, such as toothpaste and car tyres! There are 26 acres to explore with your hairy friend. Full of interactive exhibits and with indoor areas too, making it a great option for a rainy day.
Cardinham Woods Dogs love woodland, and there are oodles of trails to choose from in this huge woodland near Bodmin. Unsurprisingly, it’s particularly lovely in the autumn. There’s a super cafe in the woods too, serving lunches and cream teas on pretty china in front of a roaring log fire. Or pack a picnic and enjoy in the pretty picnic area.
National Lobster Hatchery Small but perfectly formed, dogs are very welcome in this attraction in Padstow, where you can delve into the fascinating watery world of the lobster. Marvel at the teeny tiny baby lobsters and learn all about the marine conservation work being undertaken to protect this wonderful creature.
Arthurian Centre This dog-friendly day out near Tintagel is the legendary site of the last battle of King Arthur. Visit King Arthur’s Gravestone before exploring the battlefield, a 750 year old longhouse, several gardens and an orchard packed with heritage apple trees.
Bodmin Keep Fantastic dog-friendly museum in the heart of Bodmin. Contains over 12,000 exhibits, showcasing Cornwall and the nation’s military history. Dogs welcome throughout but please be sure to book in advance.
Lappa Valley Steam Railway One of the top attractions in the area for children under 10 and dogs are very welcome on leads. In addition to the steam train, there’s a boating lake, soft play, crazy golf, musical trails and woodland walks. In all there are around 35 acres to explore!
Pinetum Gardens Home to one of the largest plant collections in the county, this family owned garden near St Austell has 30 acres to explore and be inspired by. There’s an outdoor tearoom serving a selection of soups, sandwiches, pasties and cream teas. Allow around half a day to have a good mooch with your pooch.
Ready For The Ulti-Mutt Holiday?
Choose Your Dog-Friendly Cottage
Sleeps 4 + Cot | 3 Dogs Welcome
Single-storey cottage with woodburning stove for cosy evenings. Two bedrooms & two bathrooms. Hidden woodland garden with views. Low-occupancy discount available for couples.
Sleeps 2 + Cot | 2 Dogs Welcome
Luxury cottage for couples with woodburning stove for cosy evenings by the fire. King-size bedroom with Hypnos bed and en-suite. Private terrace plus shared garden and farmland for walkies.
Sleeps 2 + Cot | 1 Dog Welcome
Pretty cottage for two with a cosy woodburning stove. King-size bedroom with Hypnos bed and en-suite with walk-in rainfall shower. Private terrace plus shared garden and farmland for walkies.